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Publication #WEC 160

Florida Bird Monitoring Program1

Mark E. Hostetler2

Figure 1. 

Carolina Chickadee.


Credit:

Dan Sudia


[Click thumbnail to enlarge.]

The Florida Bird Monitoring Program was developed by the Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation's Wildlife Extension office in June 2001. The objective of the Florida Bird Monitoring Program is to maintain a website where you can enter and view bird survey data collected by yourself and others. Homeowners as well as participants from natural resource fields, Cooperative Extension, and state education programs are encouraged to participate.

Which types of birds are visiting your yard or neighborhood (Figure 1)? Using the Florida Bird Monitoring website, you can track which birds occur in your yard and community over time. If you are a property owner who is landscaping to attract wildlife, you can learn which landscaping strategies and management techniques have worked best for others in attracting certain bird species. The University of Florida's Backyard Wildlife Habitat Program (BWHP) and Florida Yards & Neighborhoods Program (FYN) can suggest ways for you to improve the ecological design and maintenance of your yard. Learn more about these programs, BWHP and FYN, online at http://www.wec.ufl.edu/extension/landscaping/fblw/ and http://fyn.ifas.ufl.edu, respectively. By monitoring birds in your yard both before and after landscape improvements, you can see how these improvements affect birds in your yard. You can also monitor the quantity and types of birds that visit any area throughout the state from month to month and year to year.

Most importantly, you can compare your survey results with the results of other Bird Monitoring Program participants. Where and what types of birds are occurring in different areas? Are certain birds favoring one type of property (habitat) over another? Why is this so? By comparing surveys, you can discuss ideas, pose questions, and develop suggestions about how to improve your neighborhood for birds.

Figure 2. 

You will record the birds you see and hear during your surveys, and then enter your data on the website.


Credit:

Mark E. Hostetler


[Click thumbnail to enlarge.]

Surveys can be conducted anywhere. Small lots and yards, neighborhoods, city parks and reserves, agricultural land, lakes and ponds, and schoolyards are all potential areas to survey birds (Figure 2).

For more information on this exciting new program, please visit our Wildlife Extension website at http://www.wec.ufl.edu/extension/ and the Florida Bird Monitoring Program website at: http://bird.ifas.ufl.edu.

Please note: To enter survey data, you must use a fairly recent version of Netscape Navigator as your browser. To download the newest version of Netscape Navigator (it's free), visit their website: http://www.netscape.com/.

If you have any questions, please contact Mark Hostetler, Extension Wildlife Specialist, at 352-846-0568 or hostetlerm@wec.ufl.edu.

For more publications about wildlife and lots of other topics, go to University of Florida's IFAS EDIS website at http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu.

Footnotes

1.

This document is WEC 160, one of a series of the Wildlife Ecology and Conservation Department, Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida. First published: December 2001. Reviewed October 2006, November 2009, and October 2012. Visit the EDIS website at http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu.

2.

Mark E. Hostetler, associate professor and Extension Wildlife Specialist, Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation, Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611.

The use of trade names in this publication is solely for the purpose of providing specific information. UF/IFAS does not guarantee or warranty the products named, and references to them in this publication does not signify our approval to the exclusion of other products of suitable composition.


The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) is an Equal Opportunity Institution authorized to provide research, educational information and other services only to individuals and institutions that function with non-discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, political opinions or affiliations. For more information on obtaining other UF/IFAS Extension publications, contact your county's UF/IFAS Extension office.

U.S. Department of Agriculture, UF/IFAS Extension Service, University of Florida, IFAS, Florida A & M University Cooperative Extension Program, and Boards of County Commissioners Cooperating. Nick T. Place, dean for UF/IFAS Extension.